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Penn Fellowship in Advanced Biomedical Ethics

About the Fellowship

The Department of Medical Ethics and Health Policy at the University of Pennsylvania Perelman School of Medicine invites applications for the postdoctoral Fellowship in Advanced Biomedical Ethics.  The mission of this 2-year Fellowship is to train scholars and future leaders in academic biomedical ethics.  Appointments will commence in summer/fall 2017.

Fellows will participate fully in the life of the Department of Medical Ethics and Health Policy, which is among the world’s leading bioethics departments.  They will have full access to the intellectual resources of the larger Penn community. 

Fellows will receive a generous annual stipend, benefits, full tuition for a master’s degree in bioethics, and funds for academic books and travel.

The core fellowship experience will consist of:

  1. Mentored research:  Working with one or more faculty mentors, Fellows conduct original research intended to lead to the publication of at least 2 manuscripts in top-tier peer-reviewed journals.
  2. Master’s degree in bioethics: Depending on their prior education and academic and professional goals, some fellows pursue a Master of Science in Medical Ethics (MSME) or a Master of Bioethics (MBE) degree.  Information about both degree programs is available at http://medicalethics.med.upenn.edu/education. Regardless of whether they pursue a degree, all fellows participate in a weekly core bioethics proseminar led by the Fellowship Director and other faculty.
  3. Department seminars:  Fellows will participate in and present work at department seminars, including sessions focused on works-in-progress and presentations by department and affiliated faculty.
  4. Ethics committee and institutional review board experience:  Consistent with their interests, Fellows will gain ethics committee and/or institutional review board (IRB) experience at a Penn-affiliated hospital.

How to Apply

Applications are invited from scholars with doctoral degrees in hand (MDs, PhDs or equivalent, JDs), or who will receive such degrees by May of the year in which they apply to the fellowship.  Doctorates may be in any relevant field, including but not limited to philosophy, political science, psychology, sociology, economics or anthropology.  Prior experience in bioethics is not required.


Applications will include the following items:

  1. A curriculum vitae
  2. A personal statement (maximum 1200 words) that describes your reasons for applying to the fellowship, career goals, and specific areas of interest, if any, within bioethics.
  3. A published or unpublished writing sample (or excerpt) for which you were the sole or lead author (i.e., wrote the first draft).  Sole-authored writing samples are preferred. Maximum length of the writing sample or excerpt is 6 journal pages or 15 double-spaced manuscript pages.
  4. Two letters of recommendation to be submitted by individuals familiar with your academic work.
  5. Physician applicants who are currently enrolled in a clinical or research training program should include a third, additional letter of recommendation from their training program director. It should address:
    1. What your clinical responsibilities, if any, will be during the period of the fellowship. The training program director should affirm that you will be able to commit at least 80% of your professional time to bioethics fellowship activities, including mentored research.
    2. Whether the clinical program has a training grant or other funds available to support your stipend and benefits during your time in the bioethics fellowship program.

Applications are due by December 5, 2016.

For additional information, contact:

Angela Golub
Administrative Coordinator, Penn Fellowship in Advanced Biomedical Ethics